MIRA MESA, Calif.—
Scripps Health hired Lei Dong as chief medical physicist for a proton therapy center under construction and on track to begin treating patients in spring 2013. Dong most recently was deputy chair of the department of radiation physics at MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston. Scripps Clinic Medical Group, meanwhile, recently named Dr. Carl Rossi Jr. as the medical director for Scripps Proton Therapy Center. For the past nine years, Rossi has been the facility director of Loma Linda University Radiation Medicine in Ridgecrest, Calif. The Scripps Health-affiliated practice will oversee medical services at the center, while the system will provide clinical management services. The $220 million project is being developed by Advanced Particle Therapy, which secured financing for the construction, equipment and seven-acre site in Mira Mesa, several miles from the system’s Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla. Construction on the 102,000-square-foot facility started in October 2010, and in October of this year, workers installed a 90ton cyclotron, the equipment that accelerates protons to create the beam that targets hard-to-reach tumors. Scripps Health expects the center to treat about 2,400 patients a year from throughout the West. The system also wants to form partnerships with other providers in the region interested in providing proton therapy and in November announced one with 318-bed Rady Children’s Hospital-san Diego.
The 90-ton cyclotron is the driving force behind the Scripps Proton Therapy Center in Mira Mesa, Calif.